The Steps A Car Accident Attorney Can Take After Your Car Crash
If you have been involved in a rather serious car crash and your insurance company is giving you a difficult time about paying for your medical bills and other costs, then you really need to call a car accident lawyer. Many people do not go this route because they figure hiring a lawyer means they will be going to court — but that's not always the case. Instead, car accident attorneys usually adhere pretty closely to this 3-step process when you hire them to represent you.
Step 1: Try to negotiate with the insurance company.
It's always in your insurance company's best interest to not pay for your damages or to pay less than you really deserve. So sometimes they might make you a lowball offer just to see if you'll accept. Some people do! It might just take a call or letter from your lawyer to get them to see things your way and pay for the damages. Your lawyer can communicate with them directly on your behalf, requesting the money you feel you deserve. You should know within a week or two if the insurance company has changed its tune after contact from your lawyer.
Step 2: Sue and wait for a settlement offer.
If your insurance company still won't budge after your lawyer's request, then your lawyer can move forward and start the process of suing them. But again, this does not necessarily mean you'll end up in court. After many insurance companies are sued, they tend to want to settle outside of court. This means they may make a formal settlement offer if you agree to drop the case. They may offer less than what you were asking for. For instance, if you wanted $100,000 in damages, they may offer to give you $80,000 to settle out of court. You and your lawyer can decide whether accepting this settlement offer is worth it, and you can also try to negotiate the offer further upwards.
Step 3: Go to court.
If you and the insurance company cannot agree on a settlement offer or if the company refuses to settle, only then will you need to have your case heard by a judge in court. Keep in mind this is not a criminal case. Nobody is going to be given jail time. Rather, the judge will determine if you are due compensation and how much you are do — and then you should get any compensation within a few months.
To learn more, contact a resource like the Palmetto Injury Lawyers.